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Most helpful customer reviews
269 of 321 people found the following review helpful.
Join the Navy, save the world, get the girl and have a chicken burito!
This film has for only purpose to entertain us and in this aspect it is highly succesful. The main hero is very likeable, the leading girl charming, the display of military hardware impressive, the aliens naughty (and ugly and stupid!), the scenario doesn’t make much sense, the CGI effects are EXCELLENT, US Navy is the best, US government is incompetent – in one word, everything is as it should be in a movie made to go nicely with your popcorn on a Friday evening. WARNING! Some SPOILERS incoming at six o’clock!The main hero, Lt. Alex Hopper (Taylor Kitsch) is a troubled young man who after messing up a lot in his early life finally joined the US Navy and by some extraordinary miracle managed to become an officer in charge of weapons on board of USS “John Paul Jones”, a very powerful destroyer of “Arleigh Burke” class. He is however poorly noted by his superiors and is generally considered as a disappointment and a failure. The unexpected alien invasion during a naval exercice will suddenly force him to take command (“Who is in charge now?” “Hopper!” “We are so dead!”) and lead his men into a particularly deadly fight against a vicious and resourceful enemy.Other than his messy life style Alex Hooper has also another “problem” – his gorgeous, sculpturally beautiful girlfriend Samantha (Brooklyn Decker). She loves him, he loves her and they are engaged to be married – but her father hates his guts and for reasons which you will have to discover yourself his agreement to their marriage actually matters…Other characters are also important: Alex’s brother, Stone Hopper (Alexander Skarsgard) who is the older, responsible and organised version of Alex; Vice-Admiral Shane (Liam Neeson), tough, impressive commander in chief of US Pacific Fleet; Japanese Navy Captain Nagata (Tadanobu Asano), commanding the Japanese destroyer “Myoko” and Lt. Colonel (Retired) Mick Canales (Gregory D. Gadson), a bitter US Army veteran who lost his both legs in one of recent American wars.Rihanna makes her movie debut in this film, as Petty Officer Cora Raikes, a weapon specialist and crew member on board of USS “John Paul Jones”, serving under Alex Hopper orders. She has a lot of screen time and she is VERY good! I was very pleasantly surprised by her acting and I am looking forward to see her in more films.The display of modern weaponry is very impressive. 5-inch guns and 20mm Phalanx CIWS (Close-in Weapon System), “Harpoon” missiles and 324 mm torpedoes of American and Japanese destroyers are used generously and they give a great show. And once the old battleship USS “Missouri” enters in action with her 16-inch big guns, things get even better!The aliens are very very agressive and naughty – although to be fair, they seem to avoid the colateral damage as much as possible, by sparing the obviously harmless oponents. They also try to rescue their own soldiers taken prisoner, which is something not so frequent in SF films. Other than that they are the “standard issue” aliens: ugly, hostile, technologically advanced in some fields but limited in others (they do not seem to grasp fully the concept of guided weapons) and last but not least abysmally, galactically, terminally stupid! BUT, in this film it actually is an asset, because it allows USS “Missouri” to engage the alien flagship in a way which reminds of the bloody and dramatic fight between HMS “Victory” and “Redoutable” at Trafalgar…The scenario doesn’t make much sense as for the reasons for this invasion which seems ultimately to be just a reconnaissance. The reason for the attack on Oahu island and the whole battle around it are even more ludicrous – as for the whole “saving the world” thing, let’s just throw a veil of silence on it… A civilization able to send a scouting military expedition of five ships through interstellar space, can always send a second one, stronger and better prepared. So, there is a possibility of a sequel.The CGI effects are really EXCELLENT! Alien ships and weapons are very well done, fights are very “realistic” and visually the film is a big success.All fighting men and women of US forces (and the one lonely Japanese guy) are shown as heroes fighting to the end at the best of their capacities, engaging enemy with missiles first, handguns second and iron bars and bare fists after that, if necessary. In contrast, the US government is (of course!) completely incompetent, which is only normal, considering that it is chaired by a Secretary of Defense played by Peter MacNicol (yes, you read well!).So, all in all, it is a rather succesful, quite entertaining film, with lots of good special effects, lots of good fights, two well playing hot chicks (Brooklyn Decker and Rihanna), some handsome men, a very stupid scenario, quite a lot of humour, at least one very touching moment and one very VERY dearly paid chicken burito…))) I had lots of fun watching it, although I am aware of its weaknesses – and I think that if all you need is some harmless entertainment, you will like it too. Enjoy!
127 of 160 people found the following review helpful.
WHO’S NEXT IN CHARGE?
By The Movie Guy
The film starts with a NASA announcement that they are sending signals to a nearby “Goldilocks” planet to see if there is any life. We then switch to a bar scene where Alex (Taylor Kitsch) is “celebrating” his birthday with his naval officer brother Stone (Alexander Skarsgård). He sees a young lady at the bar attempting to score a chicken burrito…which leads us to some comical events and then the opening credits.After the credits, the film jumps some undisclosed years ahead. Alex is a full lieutenant in the navy on a ship (normally takes 8-10 years to rise that high). The girl, Samantha (Brooklyn Decker) happens to be the daughter of the Fleet Admiral (Liam Neeson). They want to get married. The admiral loathes Alex because he is a gross underachiever. Everything is fun and games until…the subplots come together. At this point we can write the rest of the script. The alien ships were akin to transformers.I must apologize, but I enjoyed the film. The inane plot continuity issues and science was Asylum grade from beginning to end. I could be here all day writing about how absurd things were. But unlike an Asylum film, they didn’t cheat us on a soundtrack which ranged from Henry Mancini to AC/DC. We had quality actors playing likable characters with some decent lines. And no one can beat WWII vets during an AC/DC music montage.Think of the movie as “Independence Day” light with cheese. Good fun, good action, break out the popcorn and park your brain at the door.No sex, no nudity, near F-bombs.
79 of 99 people found the following review helpful.
An entertaining film that follows the alien invader formula
By M. Oleson
I can remember as a younger father playing the Hasbro game with my kids. I also have a vague recollection of playing a version as a kid myself using a pencil and paper but that could be just dead brain cells floating around. Speaking of dead brain cells…with a movie like “Battleship” it is usually a good idea to set the bar low (pick a Michael Bay movie) and just relax. For me, I use the second “Transformers” movie “Revenge of the Fallen” as my standard.Here we have some early scenes that actually aren’t bad and begin to flesh out the characters. The focus is on bad boy, Alex Hopper (Taylor Kitsch) who somehow becomes a U. S. Navy officer at the insistence of his big brother, Stone (Alexander Skarsgard) who already is a Commander. Unless memory again fades, having been in the Navy myself it is unlikely that they would accept a drunken felon into their officer corps (i.e. Alex) but maybe things have changed.While this is a minor nit not worth picking, there are so many other flawed aspects of the film, it can’t be taken seriously. The good news is that the movie is wildly, if absurdly, entertaining. It is decently constructed with a beginning, middle and an end. The movie is extremely loud at times, especially when the alien visitors take offense at being threatened and launch their razor sharp ball bearing thingies. I mean, the Earthlings did invite them, right? All is well that ends well, especially when you have the mothballed (yet battle ready!) U.S.S. Missouri easily launched with a skeleton crew (pun intended).
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